Today, March 25th, marks the United Nations declared International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade. This year’s theme is “Forever Free: Celebrating Emancipation.” It is estimated that 25-30 million men, women and children were sold and traded between the 16th and 19th centuries. It is today that we remember this dark time in history. However, it is also today that we remember survivors of this era and celebrate a declaration of freedom! Slave trade routes spanned between Europe, Africa, South America and North America.
There were many valiant girls and women who contributed to the emancipation and freeing of slaves. One of the most well known in the United States is Harriet Tubman. Harriet risked her life freeing slaves and rescued many who were enslaved. Let’s honor her memory and remember the millions of girls and women who fought against slavery and suffered through this tragic time in history.
Today, let’s also remember that…
MODERN DAY SLAVERY STILL EXISTS. This was a global issue and it still is a global issue.
Here are top ten facts about Modern Day Slavery
- Slavery: forced to work without pay under threat of violence and unable to walk away.
- 27 million slaves are in the world today.
- Slavery isn’t legal anywhere but happens everywhere
- The majority of slaves can be found in India and in African countries.
- Each year, thousands of slaves are trafficked into the U.S.
- Slaves work in elds, brothels, homes, mines, restaurants—anywhere slave owners can feed their greed.
- Human trafficking is the modern-day slave trade.
- $90 is the average cost of a human slave sold around the world
- Slave holders use many terms to avoid the word “slavery”: debt bondage, bonded labor, attached labor, forced labor, indentured servitude and human trafficking.
- 80% of all people trafficked into bonded labor and sexual exploitation are girls and women
- Today let’s think about the fact that 98% of all sex slaves are girls and women
When I think about heroes of the Trans-Atlantic and modern day slave trade, I think of Harriet Tubman and Somaly Mam. I think about how they were ordinary women who had experienced the horrific crime of being a slave. These women fought for their freedom and so many others. They inspire people to continue fighting! They deserve to be celebrated and honored as do the millions who have ever been enslaved!
Let’s take today and celebrate and proclaim freedom not just for those that were enslaved but those that still are enslaved around the world today! In honor of them let’s proclaim that we will continue in the fight!
Want to participate in remembering and honoring those that were victims and survivors of the Trans-Atlantic slave trade?
- Visit the Forever Free Exhibit at the United Nations Headquarters in New York
- Watch a telecast of 5th annual Global Student Conference discussing the issue of slavery
- Follow the campaign on Twitter @Rememberslavery or “Like” their Facebook page for news and events
Did you do anything to celebrate, remember or honor someone today? What are your thoughts about the Trans-Atlantic slave trade versus the current issue of Modern Day Slavery? Comment on this post or Tweet Us @GirlsGlobe!
Want to fight against Modern Day Slavery? Here are some great organizations in the fight!